Star Wars has a major presence in various forms of media that all look to complement the feature films. One of the more prominent projects currently enjoying a great deal of success is Rebels, Disney XD's animated series that depicts the early days of the Rebellion. Set prior to the original trilogy, the show has done a great job through three seasons fleshing out the Galactic Civil War by introducing a variety of characters and concepts to the canon. Just this year, Rebels brought fan-favorite Grand Admiral Thrawn to the fray (officially) and tackles the next chapter in the Obi-Wan Kenobi/Darth Maul rivalry.
While viewers enjoy following the adventures of the Ghost crew, there have been some rumblings recently that Rebels is nearing its end. The main team has already seen one member depart (Sabine), and Lucasfilm had not yet confirmed a fourth season would be happening. Now however, any fears that the series only had a few more weeks on the air have been quelled. Rebels will be back for season 4.
The Star Wars UK Twitter account made the announcement, revealing the episodes will start airing in the fall. You can check it out for yourself below:
— Star Wars UK (@StarWarsUK) March 3, 2017
Many will be pleased to hear this, especially considering the number of dangling threads in the show's core narrative. It would be a shame if Lucasfilm could not develop these stories further, and fortunately they have at least one more year. That said, it is worth wondering how much longer Rebels can go beyond this point. The timeline of the series is inching closer and closer to the events of Rogue One, and fans are curious to see what becomes of the main players by then. Both Hera and Chopper live to see the Battle of Scarif (and the Ghost is in the space battle as well), but the fates of Jedi Kanan and Ezra remain up in the air. Sooner or later, Lucasfilm is going to have to make some tough choices, or they run the risk of retroactively creating plot holes in the classic films.
But those are questions that will be answered another day. In the meantime, viewers can rest easy knowing Dave Filoni and company can continue to explore the rich dynamics and relationships that have unfolded over the previous three seasons. Rebels has really found its stride in the last couple years, striking a strong balance between the kid-friendly sensibilities of the Disney XD network and the more serious-minded themes longtime fans have come to expect from the Star Wars brand. To its benefit, Rebels hasn't been afraid to get dark when necessary, and seeing that Scarif was the Alliance's first real victory, things may have to go south shortly. It wouldn't be surprising if there was some sort of tease for season 4 at Star Wars Celebration in April.
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